ThrowbackTimes Wimbledon: Roger Federer edges Rafael Nadal to match Bjorn Borg

Seeking the fifth consecutive Wimbledon trophy, Roger Federer went all the way at the All England Club in 2007 to match Bjorn Borg’s record! In the title match a year ago, Federer took down Rafael Nadal in four sets, with the world’s leading players setting another clash 12 months later that went down to the wire. As in 2006, Nadal defeated Federer in the Roland Garros final, chasing the “Channel Slam” in London but settling with the runner-up spot for the second straight year despite a great effort. After three hours and 45 minutes, Federer earned a 7-6, 4-6, 7-6, 2-6, 6-2 triumph to write new pages of the record books. Firing 24 aces, Roger fended off seven out of 11 break chances, prevailed in the closing stages of sets one and three and produced his best tennis when it mattered the most to cross the finish line first. The Swiss had more winners and unforced errors and toppled Rafa in the quickest rallies up to four strokes.

Nadal had a slim advantage in the more advanced exchanges, although it wasn’t enough to keep him safe in the decider despite early chances to move in front. From 40-0 in the second game, Rafa suffered a break on Federer’s third break chance and pulled it back in game five to return on the positive side of the scoreboard. The returners claimed only six points by the end of the set, as they reached a tie break that Federer claimed 9-7 for a massive boost.

Roger Federer defeated Rafael Nadal in the 2007 Wimbledon final.

The Swiss saved break chances in the second set’s sixth game before Rafa grabbed a break at 5-4 with a backhand down the line winner to level the overall score and improving his chances. The Spaniard fended off a break chance at the beginning of the third set, with both players serving well until the tie break.

Roger won it 7-3 to move in front for the second time, hoping to seal the deal in set number four. Instead of that, Nadal had the upper hand, forged a 4-0 advantage and played on a high level to force a decider after dropping seven points in four service games. Feeling the pressure, Federer had to dig deep on serve early on, repelling four break chances and drawing momentum from there. Shifting into a higher gear, the defending champion rattled off the final four games to seal the deal in style and join Bjorn Borg on five Wimbledon crowns in a row. Everything worked fine for Rafa until 2-2 when he squandered his opportunities on the return, losing serve in games six and eight to propel Roger over the finish line.